When the unexpected quarantine takes place of the previously peaceful life and all the amazing plans for future.. What is the first thought? Where can I run and hide from my life?
But then.. you realize that there is nowhere to hide.. THE ENTIRE WORLD IS IN THE SAME LOCKDOWN…
Quarantine time. Limited movement. Restrictions. Less freedom. Less food. Less drinks. Less pleasures. Less socialization. Less, less, less. Stay at home!!!
It’s time to change the point of view. It’s time to change the perspective of looking through the window in this time of Corona. It’s time to take a look other way – to take a look inside.
I could sit and write for hours, maybe even for days about negative consequences of this time we are going through. But somehow, to me resonates more as a time of change and that is why I choose to sit and focus on what I want it to be rather than on what I don’t want it to be.
Here comes my story.. Since June 6, 2019 through February 21, 2020, I was on the ship working as a crew member. It was the longest contract I’ve ever done in my 7 years long career as a sailor.
My perfect plan was to sign off and have the most beautiful vacation I could plan. Yoga teachers training in India, two weeks at home with my family, one month in Argentina with someone very special to me and before I signed on the ship again one more month at home with two weddings scheduled to attend. Sounds like a perfect plan right?
I am currently in a quarantine in India uncertain what is going to happen in the next five minutes and not to mention next couple of months.
Besides all the training I received here, pretty long and deep spiritual practice in the past few years or lives and a deep retreat here it was very difficult to face all the news which were revealing cancellations of the flights and breaking those bridges as our connections and ways to reach home. One after another flight was cancelled and rebooked and cancelled again. And when I was just about to book the flight for that night and try to escape a possible quarantine my mom told me that our government announced closing the airport in Belgrade that day at NOON. Which was in 17 minutes! At that moment there was no other home to go. A great amount of fear splashed me like a cold water. All I could think about was flying out to Argentina, to find out that Argentina closed it’s borders and the airport too.
Panic, short-term chaos and despair fulfilled my whole being. I am staying here? In quarantine? For how long? Why? Why I can’t reach home? Thousands of questions came to my mind, caused a deep anxiety.. Rivers of tears.. Cold sweat.. Thousands of chills under my skin. Headache and stomach-ache and all the health issues I have ever had, were back in no time taking their well-known place in my body.
Also something very interesting happened.. The monkey family which lives close by visited our dinning place at the same moment. They were frenetically jumping from branch to branch looking for the food, biting the jack fruit and throwing them on each other. Taking my attention from the BIG existential problem the Coronavirus has just caused, I stopped for a moment to watch their game. They perfectly reflected the restlessness of my monkey mind at that moment.
I understood that they dropped so many bites from the same reason I dropped so many moments. Jumping from branch to branch.. Feeding my monkey mind. Instead I could just sit and listen what life is giving me as a solution.
And I said STOP! Stop to the panic. Stop to the chaos and fears creating that restlessness of my mind.
I took couple of deep breaths and let the calm and peace enter my heart. And so called diseases started disappearing..
Only then, I could see the sunshine again. Only then, all the tools that different masters gave us took significantly bigger importance in my life. Everyday meditation, online EFT sessions with the therapist, yoga classes, a little bit of day dreaming took place in my everyday life.
Our quarantine is not like yours. In fact it is quite different. We are in one village close to Bangalore, India, in the ashram in the middle of the jungle. We’ve been spending our time on the balcony in the nature, creating plans on how to help healing process of our Planet. There are 21 of us here plus couple of members of the ashram. We have lots of bugs, familiar and unfamiliar ones, lizards, frogs, snakes, dogs, cats and monkeys and plenty of birds singing beautiful songs.
Yet we don’t have our loved ones beside so we can hug each other and spend time together.
I said couple of times: “I would give all this nature for being with my family right now.” While some of my friends from back home would give their time indoor for being in the nature right now. Some of them even told me, stay there, here is a chaos.
And again I say STOP! Stop to the thoughts, stop to give or take. Back to business!
Let’s see what we CAN DO instead of what we are NOT ABLE to do right now!
Don’t take me wrong. I am not a yogi. I am on the path of yoga planting a small seed every now and then when I remember that someone or something much bigger (depends what you believe in) stands behind me, guides me and takes care of me.
My every day here since I got stranded in India on March 19, starts with deep heaviness, unpleasant thoughts, the same old questions “Why?” But.. Somehow, somewhere I find that little seed of faith to be planted for that day on my path of yoga and start a day with meditation, gratefulness, chanting, prayer. Sometimes I manage to make that shift fast and there are days when I reach the moment of silence only late at night.
All I know is that this is the time for change. Take it! Grasp it! And enjoy your family time! You are so lucky you have that family time!
One day, while I was sitting on the balcony all in tears, watching the nature around me, this thought came to my mind..
Isn’t it mother’s womb a form of a quarantine that we all took before we joined the outside World? Wasn’t it warm and safe place for us? Didn’t we have all we needed even though we didn’t have any of the outside world’s pleasures? The umbilical cord was all we had, warm darkness, and mother’s love. And we needed no more than that..
What is a difference between then and now?
Hug your parents if you can, give a BIG noisy kiss to your children, teach them butterflies’ kiss, and how Eskimos kiss each other.
Tell your significant one you love them. Let them know you are there for them, no matter how much they annoy you at this point of 24/7 together. If they got stranded far away from you, remember that you are the first and the last though between their sleeps. Maybe they even talk to the stars asking them to bright up your days ahead. Send them love and a wish to come back to you as soon as possible.
Don’t let this crisis take over your happiness.
Don’t let the quarantine put your mind into the negative state making you say and do what you actually wouldn’t if all of these didn’t happen. Remember that everything is bound to change.. even the quarantine times.. Freedom will take place again in our everyday life. And our now cancelled plans will be even sweeter once we are able to fulfil those dreams.
Until then, find the freedom in your hearts, free your mind, take a deep breath and stay there..
In the silence.
This will also change.
Author: Sanela Milosevic
The author of the text is Sanela Milosevic, Serbian actress by profession, who’s been working for the Carnival Cruise Line and On Board Media for the past 7 years. As a dreamer and believer, she has never thought her perfect plan could be spoiled by the global panic and chaos caused with the pandemic. In the past few months she has been deeply thinking of getting back to acting, singing and performing. But now, more than ever, this refocus is certainly going to happen sooner than later as she is getting it now.. Why wait to living the life we dream of when everything else, but our dreams, is uncertain?